File: A Falcon 9 rocket stands ready to launch a Starlink mission. Image: SpaceX
Just over six hours after launching the first crewed mission of 2024 from Florida, SpaceX is preparing for another Falcon 9 rocket launch from California. The Starlink 7-11 mission is set to launch at 8:04 p.m. PST (11:04 p.m. EST (0404 UTC).
This will be SpaceX’s 7th launch of the year so far and its third from the Golden State. Onboard is a batch of 22 Starlink V2 Mini satellites, which will join the constellation of more than 5,300 currently on orbit.
Spaceflight Now will have live coverage of the mission about 30 minutes prior to liftoff.
The first stage booster supporting this mission, tail number B1063 in the SpaceX fleet, will be making its 16th launch and landing on this flight. It previously supported the launch of NASA’s Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) spacecraft the Transporter-7 rideshare mission and 10 Starlink flights in its past.
About 8.5 minutes after liftoff, B1080 is set to land on the droneship, ‘Of Course I Still Love You,’ which is positioned in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Baja California. This will be the 80th booster landing for OCISLY and the 208th droneship landing to date for SpaceX.
Meanwhile, the company continues to monitor the progress of the Ax-3 mission, which launched from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center Thursday afternoon. Four astronauts are flying aboard Crew Dragon Freedom to dock to the International Space Station on Saturday morning.
A Falcon 9 lifts off from Kennedy Space Center carrying an international crew on a commercial mission to the space station. Image: Adam Bernstein/Spaceflight Now. Read More – Spaceflight Now